The Best Writing Pencils in 2023

Everyone knows the importance of a quality pencil when taking notes or studying. A lesser-quality pencil will smear and be difficult to erase from the page. That’s why it’s important to have the best quality pencils in your collection to keep neat and tidy notes for more organized studying.

We researched various pencils to find the best pencils for studying that are available today. When analyzing various pencils, we looked for classic versus mechanical, lead type and thickness, available eraser options, and cost, among other things.

Whether you want the best writing pencils, or you are looking for a classic wooden pencil, this list has a variety of options and tips that will help you decide which pencil will work best for you.

Best Writing Pencils:

1. Pentel GraphGear 500 Automatic Drafting Writing Pencil

Pentel GraphGear 500 Automatic Drafting Pencil Black (PG525A)

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The best mechanical pencil for long writing is the Pentel GraphGear. If you spend a lot of your time writing or taking notes, the design of this pencil, with its metal comfort grip makes it easy to write for a long period of time.

The elegant design of this modern pencil is made with metal details, giving it a comfortable weight while writing. Each pencil comes with a refillable eraser and a 0.5mm lead.

People who use this drafting pencil love that it is simple, inexpensive, and effective.

This pencil is great for long periods of note-taking and its durability will ensure that you will be reusing this pencil for years to come. While this pencil falls in the budget price range, it is worth the investment.

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2. Paper Mate Clearpoint Mechanical Pencil for Writing

Paper Mate Clearpoint Mechanical Pencil, 0.7 mm, Black Barrel, Refillable

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The Paper Mate Clearpoint lets you see the 0.7mm graphite inside so you know exactly when to refill it. Each pencil has a side-clicking graphite advancer for ease of use and the jumbo twist-up refillable eraser will last longer than most erasers without smearing or damaging your paper.

People love the design of this pencil and its comfortable grip. They say that the 0.7mm graphite is thicker and harder to break than other thinner lead.

This pencil is a classical mechanical pencil with a variety of benefits. The side-loading graphite and twist-up eraser will keep you writing for hours without fatigue.

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3. Zebra 54012 Stainless Steel Mechanical Pencil for Writing

Zebra 54012 Stainless Steel Mechanical Pencil, 0.5mm Point Size, Standard HB Lead, Black Grip, 2-Count

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This stainless steel mechanical pencil is one of the most durable pencils available today. The design is sleek and modern while still being rugged and long-lasting. This drafting pencil is shorter than many and works well on the go in shirt pockets or handbags.

Customers of this pencil say that this is the best value for a mechanical pencil great for drawing and note-taking.

If you are looking for a pencil that will last you years without having to replace it, the stainless Zebra M-301 will make the perfect addition to your collection.

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4. Ticonderoga Quality Pencils for Writing

Ticonderoga Pencils, Wood-Cased, Graphite #2 HB Soft

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Potentially the most iconic pencil on this list is the Ticonderoga pencil. When you are looking for quality pencils for writing, the Ticonderoga is a classic pencil and the #2 graphite is perfect for test-taking.

Frequent users of this pencil love the quality and smooth writing on the #2 HB graphite. Even the pickiest about their pencils have said that these are a staple in their collection. Many say these are the best pencils you can get today.

If you are looking for one of the most trusted wooden pencils on the market today, try the Ticonderoga. This classic pencil is affordable and perfect for someone who needs to buy their pencils in bulk.

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5. Pentel Sharp Kerry Mechanical Pencil for Writing

Pentel Sharp Kerry Mechanical Pencil - 0.5 mm - Olive Green Body (P1035-KD)

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One of the most elegant mechanical pencils on the market today is the Pentel Sharp Kerry. The sleek design of this bold mechanical pencil offers comfort and durability.

Users of this mechanical pencil love the elegant design with the durability and quality of a well-made mechanical pencil. They love that it is easy to travel with and doesn’t deteriorate. Many say that this is their favorite mechanical pencil of all time.

This pencil combines beauty with durability. This retractable pencil allows you to click out at much graphite as you need at a time and stores the rest in the barrel to keep it safe from breaking. Though this pencil is more expensive than others on the list, it is well worth the investment.

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6. Paper Mate (2254) Mirado Black Warrior Lead Comfortable Pencils for Writing

Paper Mate (2254) Mirado Black Warrior Lead Pencils, (Medium) Soft (12 Count) (3 Pack of 12)

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Paper Mate makes some of the best writing supplies on the market today, and the Mirado Black Warrior pencils are among the best. Each matte black pencil has #2 HB graphite for test-taking and the built-in rubber eraser works smoothly without smudging or damaging the paper.

Customers of this pack of pencils appreciate that it provides comfortable pencils for writing and has a centered graphite core.

This pack of pencils is made by Paper Mate, one of the longest-leading brands in office supplies. Each pencil has a matte black finish and smooth wood for comfort when used. This classic brand of pencils will be a great addition to your collection of writing supplies.

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7. Retro 1951 Tornado Mechanical Pencil for Writing

Retro 1951 Tornado Mechanical Pencil, 1.15Mm, Stealth (VRP-1701)

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This is by far the most uniquely designed pencil on this list. The matte black color of the Tornado by Retro51 gives this pencil a distinct look and the large lead and eraser make this pencil extremely durable.

People have said that they will not own another mechanical pencil after trying the Tornado. They love that the large lead rarely breaks and the pencil feels indestructible.

The unique design of this mechanical pencil and its durability will make this mechanical pencil a favorite in your collection for years to come. While this is a more expensive pencil, it is definitely worth the investment.

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8. BIC Xtra-Sparkle Mechanical Pencil, Medium Point (0.7 mm), 24-Count, Refillable Design for Long-Lasting Use

BIC Xtra-Sparkle Mechanical Pencil, Medium Point (0.7 mm), 24-Count, 2 Pack

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This is a new spin on a classic mechanical pencil. Bic mechanical pencils have been around for decades because of their affordability and their quality. The Xtra-Sparkle version of this classic mechanical pencil offers a variety of attractive colors to choose from.

Each reliable mechanical pencil comes with #2 graphite with a white rubber eraser and a 0.7mm writing tip. Because the tip is a little larger than many 0.5mm graphite mechanical pencils, you have less of a chance of your lead breaking in the middle of a project.

Customers appreciate the reliability of this long-trusted brand of mechanical pencils. The pack of 24 pencils is affordable and great for teachers and artists who love having pencils available at all times.

Bic has been selling high-quality products for more than 60 years and these classic mechanical pencils have been a staple. For such a reasonable price you can get enough pencils to last you an entire school year.

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9. ForestChoice Graphite #2 Pencils for Writing

ForestChoice Graphite #2 Pencils - 12 Count

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If you are in the market for the best wooden pencils for writing, Golden Bear by Palomino makes a great wooden pencil for note-taking. Each pencil comes with #2 graphite and a built-in eraser and is certified non-toxic. They are made from Geniun Incense-cedar, which makes them strong and durable for everyday use.

People love the quality of these pencils and the smell of the incense cedar. Customers of these pencils love the centered graphite cores that write smoothly and the smooth durable cedar wood.

These pencils are great if you prefer wooden pencils over mechanical ones. While these pencils are a bit more expensive than other wooden pencils available, they are durable and well worth the money.

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10. Mitsubishi UNI Professional Highest Quality Drafting Writing Pencils

Mitsubishi UNI K(n) Professional Highest Quality Drawing Drafting Pencils (12 degree Mix-HB/2B/3B/4B/5B/6B/H/2H/3H/4H/5H/6H) Pack of 12

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Uni-ball makes some of the highest-quality pencils on the market today. The high-density graphite core of each pencil is perfectly centered and the wood is smooth to the touch.

With this pack, you get 12 pencils with lead hardnesses of HB, 2B, 3B, 4B, 5B, 6B, H, 2H, 3H, 4H, 5H, and 6H. This set is perfect for people who love to sketch and draw. People who use these pencils love the quality of the product and how smoothly the pencils write.

When you are looking for a more professional set of pencils, consider these Uni-ball Mitsubishi pencils. While they are a higher price, you can tell the difference in the quality.

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Tips for Choosing The Best Writing Pencils

Choosing the best pencil for your needs is important. Whether you don’t like the way mechanical pencil lead easily breaks, or you prefer a pencil with the most eraser available, here are some things to consider when shopping around for the best pencil.

Mechanical versus wooden

There are benefits to both of these options. If you have a quality wooden pencil with a properly centered core, your lead will be stronger and last longer. Mechanical pencils, on the other hand, don’t require pencil sharpeners.

Lead type

If you plan to use your pencil for taking standardized tests, you want something that comes with standard #2 HB lead which is a pretty common choice to use in a sketchbook. If you plan to use your pencil for drawing or sketching, you may want a variety of lead types, like the ones that come with Mitsubishi UNI Drafting Pencils.


Wooden pencils are generally pretty durable, but if you are looking for a mechanical pencil you want to take the barrel style into account. A mechanical pencil with a stainless steel barrel will be more durable than one with a plastic barrel.


Some wooden pencils don’t come with erasers and require you to have either a handheld eraser or buy pencil-top erasers. Many mechanical pencils have refillable erasers or even twist-up erasers like the Paper Mate Clearpoint.


If you are looking to buy pencils in bulk, you may want to focus on more affordable wooden pencils. If you want a top-of-the-line pencil that will last you years, try investing in a durable mechanical pencil. The initial expense of the pencil will pay for itself with years of use.

Ultimately, the decision on which pencil to choose will be based on personal preference. This list of aspects to consider when looking for pencils will help give you an idea of what to look for based on your preferences.

Making The Decision

Regardless of your reason for writing, this list of the best pencils includes the best writing mechanical pencils as well as the best wooden pencils to write. The list of tips for finding the best pencil for you will give you an idea of what to look for when you are shopping around for pencils.

Whether you want to sketch for hours or need to take a semester’s worth of notes, there are pencils on this list that work for every purpose.

If you prefer mechanical pencils, this list has mechanical pencils in every price range, and if you like the classic feel of wooden pencils, this list has the best options available. You are sure to find your new favorite pencil on this list.

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